Majority of the folks believe they need not worry about dehydration. This is not true as many studies show that hundreds of illnesses stem from body’s lack of adequate fluids. People who suffer from acne, constipation, headaches and other chronic conditions all have one thing in common: they do not drink enough fluids and their bodies are completely dehydrated without their even knowing about it. Often, people think they are getting lots of fluids through caffeinated beverages, sodas etc. This is not the case since many of these drinks are diuretics and they deplete the water in the body causing further dehydration. Bottom line: it is not just people living in deserts who need to worry about dehydration. Today, we will cove some best remedies to quickly cure dehydration that will also prevent related headaches and chronic health conditions. We will also touch base on some tips on what to eat when your body is severely dehydrated.
1. Take sips of fluids
The best thing to do to prevent and treat dehydration is to take small sips of fluids like soups, water and other healthy beverages such as sports drinks which do not contain caffeine and sugar. Many times, dehydrated children may not feel hungry or thirsty as a result of which they might refuse food and drink. Feed the child a bit of soup and crackers. Watch out for signs of severe dehydration which include dry mouth, not producing enough tears or urine and so on. If the child shows signs of confusion, immediately take him/her to the emergency room.
2. IV fluids
In highly dehydrated patients, intravenous fluids must be administered quickly to cure the lack of fluids. The needle which will help insert the IV line might sting a bit but it will also take the fluids immediately where they are needed.
3. Avoid sugary beverages
Sugary drinks like sodas, lemonades, iced tea and certain sports drinks contain caffeine which depletes fluids from the body. These drinks cause you to urinate more than normal throwing out the remaining water from the body. This is the opposite of what the body needs right now. So try to sip on plain water. You can add a bit of lemon juice, salt and honey to the water in case you are not too fond of plain water.
4. Elderflower water
Elderflower is one of the best herbal remedies to get rid of dehydration quickly. In case of fever, this remedy will help lower body temperature and prevent further loss of water. It also cools down the body quickly and is an ideal remedy for dehydration if you have spent hours in the sun or are suffering from heat exhaustion.
5. Coconut water
There is a reason why coconut water is considered as one of the best drinks apart from water for treating dehydration. Coconut water is full of electrolytes and also contains iron, potassium and other salts that quickly hydrate the body. In fact: it has all the attributes of Gatorade and other sports beverages without the caffeine to cure and prevent dehydration.
Not only is buttermilk hydrating, it is also probiotic which means it flushes out the toxic waste from the body and also harmful bacteria that cause infections. Consume a cup of buttermilk two to three times a day. You can add a bit of salt and ginger powder to this drink to make it even more effective. The ginger will settle the stomach in case you have nausea or vomiting which contributes to the dehydration.
7. Lemon/lime juice
Lemon or lime juice added to a glass of water is the best home remedy to quickly cure dehydration. Add juice of freshly squeezed lemon/lime with a bit of salt and pepper to a glass of water. Do not add sugar. Drink the mixture three times a day. To sweeten the drink, add a bit of maple syrup or agave nectar to it.
8. Fenugreek and yogurt
Fenugreek seeds are readily available in health food stores. They have a bitter aftertaste but are packed with nutrients that are necessary to replenish the lost minerals when you have diarrhea or vomiting. To a cup of yogurt, add half a teaspoon of powdered fenugreek. Eat the mixture a couple of times a day. The yogurt will help balance the electrolytes and provide you with good bacteria to flush out toxins.
9. Eat bananas
Bananas are rich in potassium and other salts that get lost due to diarrhea or vomiting. Bananas are the best foods to eat when the body has experienced severe dehydration.
10. Herbal teas-not all are recommended
Many herbal teas contain caffeine which you must avoid at all costs. Look for teas which are decaffeinated. Chamomile tea is a great remedy as it can relax sore muscles and help you sleep better. Have a cup or two before bedtime to sleep well and also prevent dehydration. Likewise Bitter Orange tea is recommended to balance electrolytes in the body.
11. Plain salt and water
Salt is needed when you have played sports or are feeling light headed due to heat exhaustion. Eat salty crackers, soups and broths and also drink water with bit of salt, lemon juice or pepper to replenish lost salts. Drink plenty of water and also make sure to start and finish the day with 16 oz of water daily.
12. Soak in Epsom bath
On hot days, this remedy can reduce fatigue caused by dehydration. Add a cup of Epsom salts to tepid bath water. Soak in it for at least 20 minutes. Epsom salts can replenish lost magnesium in the skin. This is also a great remedy to fight altitude sickness and relieve headaches or tired, swollen muscles after a long hike.
13. Preventing dehydration in young kids
For infants and babies, breast milk is the best thing to feed after a severe bout of vomiting or diarrhea. Your pediatrician might also recommend store brought oral rehydration solutions (ORS) like Pedialyte®. For older kids, you can give Jello, popsicles, lemonade, buttermilk, broth, soups etc. You can also make homemade ORS by boiling 5 cups of water with 8 teaspoons of sugar and one level teaspoon salt. Feed this to the child several times a day. You can also administer baby cereal made with water and pinch of salt.
Dehydration is a serious matter. If you experience symptoms such as fainting or vomiting, it is important that you see your doctor immediately.